Thursday, December 23, 2010

Wrap-Up: Virgin's 'Project' goes free for the holidays; more updates for media and technology apps

A few short items to read before we shut down TNM for the holiday weekend.

The iPad magazine 'Project' from Virgin Digital Publishing has gone free for the holidays. The app was always a free download, but once installed the reader could access a sample of the issue for free, but was required to pay for full access. It was probably a good idea to open this up for a limited time to entice new readers.
One of the biggest complaints about 'Project' was slow issue download speeds. I didn't find it too much of a problem myself, but my broadband connection is pretty fast. But Virgin has decided to take no chances and have reduced the size of the issue by a third to assist in downloads. They have also made the issue compliant with iOS 3.2, as well. (Come on guys, update your iPads!)

If you missed TNM's original look at 'Project" you can see it here.

More updates: The Globe and Mail has had its iPad app updated by Spreed, its developer. This makes this version 1.4 -- and I see this as a good thing. Frequent updates is not necessarily a sign of trouble. Better an update than letting an app go too long with problems.

I enjoy reading The Globe and Mail on my iPad, but must admit that the layout of the tablet edition forces a spot on most stories for a photo -- and when there is no photo to go with the story a red maple leaf is inserted. As you might guess, some times the front page ends up looking a bit strange.
Another update comes from Apple for its Remote app, and this much appreciated. The update brings AirPlay video support to the app, as well as Internet radio control. For those people owning an iPhone or iPad (or both) and an Apple TV, this is a very welcome update.

To my surprise, I've found that I'm glad I've purchased an Apple TV. The old Apple TV didn't appeal to me, and seemed over priced. The new version only costs $99 and I've found that I've been using it more than I thought -- streaming photos to my TV, watching Netflix, and looking at Flickr slideshows while simultaneously listening to Christmas music through Pandora by streaming Pandora from my phone to the Apple TV.